IBM identity management hones in on small organizations

Identity management is most often thought of as a large enterprise capability but IBM believes there's just as much of a demand for it from small and medium sized organizations, a market it is aiming to exploit with its new Tivoli Identity Manager Express.

The new product takes the best practices derived from implementing those larger identity management systems and packages them in a form customized for those smaller organizations, said Joe Anthony, IBM's director of identity management.

Those organizations may not have the range of platforms that require a more complicated identity management implementation, he said, and they are also unlikely to have the size of IT staff that could manage one.

Tivoli Identity Manager Express works in that situation by providing a set of templates that enable an automated process for such things as setting policies, approving and managing credentials and so on. The main thing left for the IT staff to do is to point the Tivoli product to the human resources and other databases that hold the identities it would use.

"Smaller organizations still have that need for managing who has access to resources and why," Anthony said. "We are starting to see a sweet spot for this kind of solution in organizations with anywhere from 100 to 5,000 employees."

In government, for example, customers might be those branch offices or agencies that are not under the control of a centralized, enterprise identity management system and that set their own security policies and privileges.

While they wouldn't be able to build a system identical to the main agency identity management system, Anthony said, they could probably use the Tivoli product's templates to closely mimic it.

IBM is working with various partners who specialize in selling to small and medium sized organizations, according to Anthony. The product is not yet on the GSA Schedule.

Tivoli Identity Manager Express is available now priced at $24 per user, with volume discounts available.

About the Author

Brian Robinson is a freelance technology writer for GCN.


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